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What are the new features of Microsoft Hyper-V Server 2008 R2 ?

Microsoft has wrapped up the next iteration of its standalone hypervisor, that provides a reliable and optimized virtualization solution enabling organizations to improve server utilization and reduce costs. With the addition of new features such as live migration and expanded processor and memory support for host systems, it allows organizations to consolidate workloads onto a single physical server and is a good solution for organizations who are consolidating servers as well as for development and test environments. The release of Microsoft’s standalone virtualization server for small- and mid-sized business customers is a vast improvement over the first version.

With Microsoft Hyper-V Server 2008 R2, customers get increased availability with support for planned and unplanned downtime scenarios with live migration and host clustering support. Windows Server 2008 R2 provides several improvements to Hyper-V that have been in high demand ever since its initial release. These updates to Microsoft’s low-cost virtualization platform include cost-effective high availability as well as enhancements to virtual machine disk management. The most notable of Hyper-V’s improvements is the upgrade from Quick Migration to the zero-downtime Live Migration.

It allows IT professionals to leverage existing patching, provisioning, management and support tools and processes. IT Professionals can continue to leverage their individual skills and the collective knowledge of Microsoft tools, minimizing the learning curve to manage Microsoft Hyper-V Server 2008 R2.

List of new features for Microsoft Hyper-V Server 2008 R2:

  • Support for physical computers with up to 8 physical processors
  • Support for using up to 1TB of physical memory (virtual machines can use up to 64GB each)
  • Support for clustering
  • Support for live migration
  • Support for CPU Core Parking
  • Core Parking allows Windows and Hyper-V to consolidate processing onto the fewest number of possible processor cores, and suspends inactive processor cores.
  • Support for Second Level Address Translation (SLAT) in CPUs
  • On Intel processors this is called “EPT” while AMD calls it “NPT”. SLAT adds a second level of paging below the architectural x86/x64 paging tables in x86/x64 processors, providing an indirection layer from virtual machine memory access to the physical memory access. In many virtualization scenarios, hardware based SLAT support can offer performance improvements.
  • Support for VMQ, Jumbo Frames and other optimizations on networking
  • The ability to hot add / remove SCSI virtual hard disks.”

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